Llanelli Star - - BOOK SHELF -

SWEET SORROW by David Ni­cholls, Hod­der & Stoughton hard­back £20, ebook £9.99

★★★★ ★

DAVID NI­CHOLLS re­ally knows how to do bit­ter­sweet, wist­ful, problemati­c love sto­ries. From One Day to Us, his he­roes nav­i­gate the com­plex­ity of their re­la­tion­ships with ten­der­ness and many a mis­step, and Sweet Sorrow is writ­ten in the same vein.

It’s the late Nineties and Char­lie has fin­ished school – for for­ever.

The sum­mer suf­fo­cat­ingly stretches out ahead of him; the heat, the hor­mones, the bore­dom.

Be­tween his de­pressed dad at home, feel­ing aban­doned by his mum, and some­how hav­ing caused a rift be­tween him­self and his usual lad mates, Char­lie stum­bles across a girl, Fran, and she leads him astray – kind of: Join­ing an am­dram club putting on Romeo & Juliet is very much out of his com­fort zone.

KNIFE by Jo Nesbo, Harvill Secker, hard­back £20, ebook £9.99

★★★ ★★

THE twelfth book in Jo Nesbo’s ‘Harry

Hole’ (pro­nounced Hoo-luh) se­ries, brings the Oslo de­tec­tive to his low­est ebb yet, but pos­si­bly closer to ab­so­lu­tion by the book’s end.

In­ves­ti­gat­ing a vi­cious mur­der that has per­sonal ram­i­fi­ca­tions, Hole has to deal with demons real and imag­i­nary as he works through a list of sus­pects – which this time might in­clude him­self, along­side the knife-ob­sessed rapist Svein Finne.

SUP­PER CLUB by Lara Wil­liams, Hamish Hamil­ton, pa­per­back £12.99, ebook £7.99

★★★★ ★

BOLD and fresh story about food, friend­ship and fem­i­nism.

When Roberta cooks up the idea of a trans­gres­sive din­ing so­ci­ety for women with best friend Ste­vie, she starts let­ting her­self be free of ex­pec­ta­tions for once. But it also puts pres­sure on her re­la­tion­ships.

The nar­ra­tive, which jumps be­tween the present and Roberta’s lonely, trau­matic univer­sity years, makes for com­pelling read­ing.


1. When All is Said, Anne Griffin 2. Di­ary of an Awe­some Friendly Kid, Jeff Kin­ney

3. Pinch of Nom (right), Kay Feather­stone & Kate Allinson 4. Nor­mal People, Sally Rooney

5. The Se­cret Com­mon­wealth (pre-or­der), Philip Pull­man

6. I Owe You One, Sophie Kin­sella

7. Smoke and Ashes, Abir Mukher­jee

8. An Amer­i­can Mar­riage, Ta­yari Jones

9. Lords of the Desert, James Barr

10. The Mir­ror & the Light (pre-or­der), Hilary Man­tel

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